His Holiness Irinej, Serbian Patriarch served the Holy Hierarchal Liturgy at the Patriarchate of Pec, the ancient seat of the Serbian Patriarchs, on the day of the feast day of the Protection of the Most Holy Theotokos. His Grace Bishop Teodosije of Raska-Prizren concelebrated to His Holiness.
In his address to the people His Holiness especially pointed out the significance of the Patriarchate of Pec for the Serbian people, not just through history but during whole time. Its significance is that it is a ancient spiritual centre, but also the centre from where our Patriarch used to send its word to the Serbian people. On this occasion Serbian Patriarch empasized that the Serbian people would survive in the Patriarchate of Pec, the ancient capital, not only of Patriarchs but also of the whole Serbian people – no matter who guard the monastery or not.
The Patriarchate was protected by soldiers of KFOR since June 1999 and since 19 August of this year the Serbian shrines has not been anymore under the protection of the international forces. The International military units in South Serbian Province still protect only the Decani Monastery.